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The Chinese Play

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I don't kuow liow it is, Meen le,' said the manager glooratly, 'bul, tbis LiienUíf (ion"t seem to pa) ai all. It' B complete f al! ure, that's whatHis. Wj must stiikeout somethingnew and 01igioal, with a total changa of scenery, proporties and costume.' It was the lastnight of the season at iíio Crown Piince's Theater, Mayfair. The manager was an amiable young man, just beginning his careei liceRfled purveyor of dramatic condimenta ; and though he liad peppered and spieën his performances with everj known forra of legitímate or iHt-u t imate stimulant, the public somehow diiln't seein to see it, 80 here he left at the end of the last niglit, surveying the darkened house from the foot-lights, and moodily stinimiug up in his mind the grand total of th: sear 8on'8losse8. 'Meeuie' better knou n to the critica! world as Miss Amina FitzAdilbert, was his tirst young lady, 1 lively little lrish girl, with just the faintest soupcon of a brogue; and if the Crown Prince's had turned oni a success under his energetic management, Jack Roberts had fully made vip his mind that she should share with him in future the honors of his oame, at least in private life. She was in unrffected, simple little thing, with no actress's manners when off the stage, diid afi she had but one relative in the world, a certain brother Pat, who had run away to foreign parts uiiknovvn after the last Fenian business, she extctly suited Jack, who often expressed lis noble determination of m.urying a lone orphan.' Butaathings stocxi at present, he saw little chance of aftonling himself the luxury of iniitrimony on a magniflcent balance-a in which expenditure Lnvariably manriged to ontrun revenue. So he. stond diaconsolate on the pasteboard wreek of the royal mailsteam-ship which coliided nightly in his üf tb. act, and looked ike a sort of theatrical Marius about to imtoolate biniself amid the' ruins of a scène nainter's Carthaee. 'We've tried everythinj?, Meenie,' he went on, diseonsolately, 'but itdoesn't seeui to pay for all that. First of all we went in for seusational dramas. We put 'Wicked London' on the stage ; we drove a real hansoin cab wilh a live norse in it across Waterloo bridge ; we haa Miree marders and a desperate suicide; you neaily broke your neck leaping out of tlio foiirth-tWr window from the lire, when Jenking lorget to put enough tow in the sheet to break your f all, and I singed my face dread lully as the heroic Breman going to therescue. We had more railway ac cidents.powdered supr numerarles, and real water in tha piece than in any piece that was eve put on the London boards; and wha did the Daily Irritator say about ii Meenio, 1 ask you that ? En ?' 'They sak!,' Meenie answered, regietf ully, 'that the play lackbd incident, and tliat the dulluess of its genoval mediocrity was scarcely relieved by a few ocoaeional episodes wbich liardly deserved the epitliet of sensationai.' 'Well, then we went in for ietheties and high art, and bronght out Theophratus Massinger Villon Bnook's 'Ninon de l'Enclos. We draped the auditorium in sage-green lutngings, decorated the proscenium with peaoock pattorns by Whistler, got Alma-Tadema todesign the costumes for the classical mask, ai d Mil'.ais to Bupply us with hints on Renaissance properties, and Ünally half ruined ourselves over the architecture of" that chateau with the unproBOunoable name that everybody laughed at. You got yourself up so ihat your own mother wouldn't have kuown you from Elle Terry, ano I niaiie my legs look as thin as spindles 'so that I exactly resembled an eminent tragedian in the character of Hamlet; and what cáme of it all? What did the Evening Stinger remark about that play," 1 should like to know?' 'They observed,' said Meeiiie, in a tone of settled gloom.'that the decorations were washy and tasteless; that the piece itself was insipid and wcakly rendered, ard that no amount of cornpression or silk leggins wouldever reduce your calves to a truly tragic diameter.' v 'Exactly so,' said the despondent manager. 'And then we went in for scenic spectacle We produced 'l'lir Wide World: a Panorama in live Tableaus.' We laid our first act in Europe, our second in Asia, our third in Af] ca, our fourth in America, and our flfth in the islands of the Pacific Ocean. We hired flve full grown elephants from Wombwell's Menagerie, and procured living cocoa-nut palms at an enornious expense from tho Roval Gardens, Kew. We got three real Indian princes to appear on the stage in their ancestral p:i-ste diamonds; and we hired Farina's Zulus to perform their complete toilet bef ore the eyes of the spectators, as an elevatini; moral illtntration of the manners and customs of the South Sea Islanders. We had views, taken on the spot, of Enpr land's latest aequisition, the Rock o Raratonga. Finally, we wreeked tiii steauier here in a collision with aKussian iron-clad, supposed to be syrubolical of the frightf ui resulta of Mr. Gladstone's or Lord Beaeonsüeld's foreign policy- 1 m sure I forget which - and what was the cousequeiice ? Why, the goda w;tnted to sing the national mthem.aud thestallaput ontbeii squash hats and left the theatre in a fit of the snlks.' 'The fact is,' said Meenie, 'English plays and English actors are at a discount. People aretivedcf theiu. They don'tcaie lor sensation anylonger, nor for sthetics, nor for spectacle; upon my word, their taste has become s debased and degraded that I don't believe they ven care for lcgs. ïhe whole world's goue niad on foreign actors and actresses. They've got Sarah Bernhardt and the Comedie Francaise, and they go wild with ecstacies over her, as if I couldn't make myself just aa thin by a judicioua course of Dr. Tanner.' 'No, yon couldn't,' said Jack, looking at her plunip little face with i mo mentary relaxation of his brow. 'Ven: fresli little Irish cheeks coukl never íall away to Sarali's pattein.' And to say the truth, Meenie was a coinely little body enough, with jast as mucli tendency to adiposo deposit as at oneaiul-twenty makes a face look temiitingly like a peach. She blushed visibl v through her powder, which shows that she had no more of it tlian the custoin of the stage imperativa!)' deinands,;uu! went on with lier parable unrestrained. 'Then thereare the Yankees, with the .Danitcs' and Colonel Selléis, talking tragedy thrpugk their noses, and applauded to the echo by people who would turn up their own at tliem iu a transpontine melodrama, lint that's the way with Euglisli people now, just because tliey're importad direct. That comes of free trade jou know. Por vay part, l'ma deoided protectionist. I'd puta proliibitory tariil on the iinportation of foreign live stock, or compel them to be slaugbtered at the port of entry. That's what l'd do.' Jack merely sighed. 'Well, then, there are the Dutcli, again, going through their performances like wooden dolls. 'Exquisite elf-restraint,' the newspapera say. ixquisite fiddlesticks! Do you supose we eouldn't restrain ourselves if we chose to walk through 'Hamlet' ike mutes at a funeral 'i Do you snppose we eouldn't show 'suppressed feelog' if we acted Macbeth in a couple of diin't, an stand for being ' Sandv lli.ii Jac it;itively. 'Look hert?, Mi i islyj 'aupi play ?' 'Why, Jack, we'renoi Chinamei China We don'l lo least like it.' 1 (li)ii't know about ihat.' said Jack iyj'your 'e in' thing perhaps, but your no3e ia I iip to pattérn.' m, Bir,' said Meenie, pnuting, turning up the somewha ture ia question, you're gettini; i My nose is a vei y excellent nos But you could never make ■ .1 Chin iman'8. i i's al least hree Inohes too loDg.' 'Wcll, you bnow, Mi-i-;iic, ther nan wlm adverlisea :i nose macui&e 'ir pushing the cartilage, or wbat you cali it, into i proper shape. Supt this felfow to mak' lose machines for distorüng it Into a Chinese pattern. Vou'll do inough as you.stand, with a littl( mt juice, ail except the eyes; but your warmest admirer conldn't pretem your eyea are oblique. -We musí ut soiiie dodge to manage that, and tben we shall be all right. We can hire a few real Chin supernumeraries - engage Tom Fat, or ■ m ovet' f rom New York, 01 Francisco, or somewhere ; and tbe leading characters, uobody !il ever expc-ct them to be very Chinese-1 Upon my word, tbe ide;i ta about it. l'll turn itover in my miiid and see wbat we can make of It. We may start afresh next season. alter all.' Tbe next six or eight' weeks wexe a period of prodigious exertion on the part of Jack Roberts. At ürét, the notion was a mei it the more be looked at it, tbc; better lie liked it. Au eminent distorter of tbe human countcnancc 1101 only Bhowed bim iiow to twist bis noseinto Mongoloid breadtb aud flatne3s, but also tavented an invisible eyeliil for producrpg bhe Lne Turanian almond effect, uüu with success to the furfhex biylit o: gummiug on a pair of undiscoverable high cheek-bones. I" a whole company we re so transforme Miat theirown promotor wouidn t have known them, some allowance in the matter of noses and cheek-bones b naturally made in the case ot tUo leadme ladies, though all alike underwen ajudicious course of copious walnat juice. Jack belegraphed wildly to al parts of the globe for stray Chinamen and when at last he picked up half ; dozen f rom véasela in the Tuames, i was unanimoubly decided that looked far les geauinely the European membersof thecomp As tor the play, Jack settled that easily. 'We shali give thetn ;. Barnell,' he satd, with wicked auda city ; 'only we shall leave out all th consonants except n and g, and cali i 'Hang Chow, the apprentice of F Kiiing.' It'll be easy enough to studj our parts, as all we've got to do is t know our cues, and talk hocas-p ia between as long as neceasary.' Ver. wicked and unprincipled, no do ubi but very natural uuder the cin stanc In a few weeks Jack was able 1 aouueethat the celebrated Cei Troupe of the Minor of Trath, sp iy decorated by bis -M Emperor of China and Brother of the with the order m the "Veimillion l'encil-case, would appear in London d uring the coming season n an original Chinese melodrama, fora limitednumber of nights only. Enthusiasm knew no bounds. The advent of ihe Chinese actors was tiie talk of society, of the clubs, of private lite, and of Ihe boys at the street corners. The Daily Irritator had alearned article next moxning on the origin, progresa, and pn condition of the Chi ly pröduced upon the same prii ::s the famous essays on the metaphysics of the Celestial Empire which attracted bo tnuch attention in ilie columns of the Eatanswill Tlie Hebdoma I predict for its readers an intellectua treat such as tliey li:u! o since the app . in "i;i; Van Winkle" - evid ouly play at the perforni the, editor of thal thoughtful and plietic journal had ( ed. l'.uvueiit Oriental travelera .y weeklies that they had the leadii various well-Known Chii Pekin, Xagasaki, JJ;:1 gkok, ml i Kandahar. .'. raptuie of her personal i quisil , and her chainii natural histrionic power; and thi there were some e as to the q er heighf, age, Uie color 1 her hair, and t!e soprano or contralto qualitj yet these vere minor naters faded in'.o insignificenc ■ il agreement as to the admii íaculties of the coming i'1 na. Applications f or stalls, boxes, seats in the dresa circlo poured in by the thousand. Very soon Jack became rinced iluit the Crown Pri would never hold the crowdfl n threatened to besieje l'is doors, ■ made a hasty arrangement f or tukiug over the II. ■ tlie Apprentice of Fa Kiasg,' duly (tnnuunced, and the plaj in rehearsal with rigor and effect. At the beginning oL tl;e season Jurk i ed the tbeatrè with a tremendoua success. Such a ürst night was i known in London. Du itrig ucd lor boxes, anl peersoalled p i ally upon Jack to beg the iavor ol ü chairbehind the dr i the s;;il!s were secured beforeband i'or a month ahead. The Eree list wasreally suspended, and the iit and gal wcic all transformed into reserved places at live shlll ld. Jack thought it i proper ventllation by turning on a stream of pure oxygen from a patent generator in the cellars beloív. Ji, vís' tlie gratidest senaation of moi mes. Sarah B rnhardt was nowhere, Mr. Raynjond took a tbrough ticket or California, and the dutch playera went and hanged themselves in nn agonv of i The curtaln lifted upon a beautiful piece of willow-pla enerj in blue ctiiiiH. Azure trees flo airily above a cerulean cottage, whilea blue pagoda stoud out in the background airainKt llie sky, with all the :haimin; d ctivearW tvitation vvliioii so si ronl was occupied by a )lue shop, in which a youth, cl in the prevailiug color vvilh a asb of y out blue ea in blue packages to blue uupernumraries, the genuine Chinamun of the ils. A blue lime layed gracefully over the whole scène, iiil diffused íi general sense oí' celeatility over the picture in lts compleiecs. Applause was unbountled. tetic l.idies in sage-green hats tTt u-m i'rom their heads, Ut the distressil contrast of hue should mar the )'.easure of their reQned fellow-s ators; and a well-known pre-Raphaeltu iioet, liolding three datïodils in liK land, iainted outright, aahe atterwaid i i!, witb ;i spasinodic excess uf ni . the rapturouB but 'ii of í subtle lit'ehunger. ':'- in blue, by name II. mg 1 íhe expressive ial troupe, tobe the ad k pectable o ií-tot oí a sutr nteel oeighborof IVkin. At, flrst Lmpre giiided liy the hifthe t Doight bu obeerved ted nal uro of his gestamd the extreme accuracy wit.h 5hed iiib tea or counted out cl o iiis customers, his wbole i went a visible, rfeterior moment oí liisbcmuing iíC-Sh:iii; tlnw ii I.' ' herotne 01 diil he beconie leas liting oí UÍ3 piglail, o paíd íess attention to thé ét coiiiiting out of his cliange, I 1 freqiOQt and expressive iminations on tlie pait of th tUitperuumeraríes. At lp'it'i, id the suggestiooa of hiseVll b whom be appeara] about ct a clandestine marriage, ge Barn- 1 nttean, fláng Ohow- bbed thetiVlol I7strings.of ■ -I by leal Cliinesecoins ,'ly Lmpoited (frorn the proporties for the illustration of this I mural drama. Of course he wa ■■ii tlírough Uie, instrumentpt the Chinese Pólice, admirably their nalional costuine; and ;m interësting trial before a ■ i huí witli (our 'buttons and the d Order of the Peacock's Fear mud guilty of larcenyto the value of twenty shiHiugs, and nced to déaCb by the basündo, the sentence being canied out, coutrary i VVeatern laeceüent, coram populo. Mmiie. whose admirable had drawn down ñooáe of tears from the most cailous spectators, including even the Directora of a fraudulent bank. iinally repeuted in the last sc;ue, flung hetaelí upón the body of her lover, ;utd diöd wiih hiui, from the eöects of the blows administered by one of the supernumeraries with a genuine pitee of Oriental bauiboo. i isen to applause, i to tbundere. Meenie imd halt the company carne f orward for an oval ion, and ere almost bmothered under two cart loada of bouquets. The dramatic critic of the Daily Initator i hut lie had ncver till kuoWD what actinfc was. poet with the daffodils aïked to be premitted to present three golden oms with ."ii uuworthy 'holder oi rial to a lady who hatl at onc. Bweep blotted out from his memory of all European inaidens. Five sculptorf aunouDced their intention of contributmg busts oí ti;e Celestial Venus to the next academy. And society genenilly obij that such au artistic and iiiteltreat carne like a delightful üasisamidthe iuonotonous deserto: Enslisli playa and English acting. -lit, as souii as tlie house was cleaml. Jack cauahi Aleenie in his . klased lier rapturously upon both s, .1:1! vovved that they should be married that iby fortnight. Meenie observed that she migat, if she liked, ut that moment, tuke her piek of the unraarried peerage of England, but on Uk; whole. she thought she pre Jack. And su they went away be 3uocess of tlieir it at heartlessly and nnjustifUbly gulling the susceptible British public. xt d.-iv, bot!; Jack and Meenie look ly in the papers to see verdict of the able and impartial ciitii eir Chinese drama. All the fraternity were unanimous to a . 'The play itself,' said the Irritator, 'was perfect in its naive yettouch:, and in its profound ledge of tlie throlbiug human t, alway the same v.nder all dis.-, whether Lt lic the frock-coat of tendom, or the graceful tunic of tin: iling dynasty, in whose time the ii í supposod to take place. As Hiniing acting of Mee-Xee:, the 'Pearl of Dazzling ],ight' - so an eminent Sinaist iranslates the lady's Dame for us - we have seen ncth0 ii'uihful for many years on the e IL was imnj tlian Sitidons, it was grander than Rachel. And yet the graceful and annable ac'holds up the looklsg-glass to natnfe,' to borrow t!. j well-known ' ■ ucius, and really acts so lier actiug isbutan 'thername for hen she d ed in the last medical authontaea present imtl f or a moment tlat the breath reallj departed íroi.i herbndy.and SirJohn McPhysic bimself was seen blyto sigii with relief when the little lady tripped beíore tlie curtain the sidea as gayly and brightly ugh í.othing had cccurmi to fe the even tenor of her happy thoufht. It was a pleasure which we shall not of ton experience upun iíriiish boards.' tot the Eebdomadal Vaticinutor, vas so ecstatic as to di iy icnption. ■ . ■ .1 play,' said iuding vo í ■ uotice, 'it Dot even a magniñeent sermón, it a grand and nuperishable mural revfclation. burned into the very core o searebing fire oí . woman's innocent I y. To have heard it was better tlian to have read all the philosophers froin Aristotle to Merbeit .Spencer; it the underlying elhieal principie of the universe working itself out under yes to the infallible detection of ms and impostures whatsonver, with uní rring trutb and vividiie.s.H.' Jack and Meenie winced tt that i ice a little, but they managed to swaliow it, uul were happy enough in spite of the moral principlw whic'i it :i (1 was woiiiingouttiieir ultímate ision unperceh 1 ten nights 'Hang Ckow, the Appreu Ki i,' contiiiued to run with unexarapled and unabated Mee-Nee-Shang was the talk oí the clubs aud Uie salons of Loiulon. and her prtrait apjieared in all the odows, as "well as Ln the nexl i the May fair Gazette. Proïunal beautiea oí Aryan type discovered tliemselve.s suddenly at a dis; v. bile .i snub-nosedaimond-eyed ittle countess, hitherto disreftarded by l-evotees of ti ig belles, woke ie rning and í'uund bereelf !'.imou3. 0i the eleven th Dight, Jack's pride was at its zenlth. Royalty had been graciously pleased to signlfj its intention of occupying its state box, and tiie whole house was abluze, froua the moment of opening the doors, with ii perfect lloud of. diamondsand rubios. Meenie peeped with delight from beliiml the curt&in, and saw even the stulls fiüed to overflowlng ten minutos re the orchestra alruck up itsexquisitesymphony f or bella and triangle, tled 'Tiie Eehoes ut Xankin.' Hut jual al the last moment, as the 11 was on t.l point of risingi Jack rushed excltedly to her dressingroom, and pushing epen her door without even a knock, exclainied, in a tone of cragic (jistif.-.s, 'Meenie, we are lost.' 'G racioasl Jack! what on eai üi do you mean?' Uliy, who do you suppose is in the next box to the PrinceV- the Chinese A:uli;issador with al) liis suite! We shall be exposed and ruined before the óf all London, and his lloyal Highness as well.' Meenie burat away tothe stage, witti one-hnlf of her face as yet unpowdered, ' and took another peep froio behind the curtain at the auditorium. Tiue enough, il was just as Jsck bad aio. Tliere. in a ptivate hox, witli Bmiling faeeand neat pigtaü, sm. bia Excellency the Marquts Tseng in peraon, surrounded by half a dozen unquestionable Mongollans. Her tart impulse was to shnek aloud, ero Into violeni hysterics and conclude with afainting tit. Bat on second thought she decided to brazen it out 'Leave it to me, Jack,' she said, with as inuch assurance as she could command. 'We'll go tlnough the iirst ir.' aa wel] as we can, and the see what Hip Ambassador tliinks of it.' it was aMxious woik for Meenie, that eveniiig'a performance, but she pulled through it somehow. She had no eyea for the audienec, nor even for his Royal Highness; she playedsimply and s')lely to the Aratassudor's box. Sverybody in the theatie noticed ilie touching pütriotism which made the popuiar actress pay more atteution to the mere diplomatic representativo of her own beloved sovereign than to the heir app rent of the British tlirone, You know these Cliinese,' said the Marchioness of Monopoly, 'aie so tenderly and sentimentally attached to the paternal rule ot their ainiable emperrs. They still retain tliat pleasing feudal devotion which has unfortunately died out in Europe through the foolisb influenceof misguiiled agrarian agitators.' At any rate, Meenie hardly look lier eyes off the Ambasbador's face. Uut tliat impassive Oriental sat through the live acts without a sign or a movemenl. Once he ate an ice o I a Napolitaine, and once he addressed a few reinarks to an attaché ; but frora beginning to end he watched the per formance v.ith a ui.iformly smiling face, unmoveti to tears by the grefit bastinado scene, and uttei'ly impervioos rento the tonching incidents of the love-making in the third act. When the curtain feil at last, Meenie waa fevered, excited, trembling trom head to foot. but npt hopeless. Calla for 'Mee-NeoS'-ang' resounded loudly from the whule house, and evenDukes stood up enthusiasticaliy to join in the clamor. When she went forward she notioed an oininous fact. The Ambassadoi was still in hia place, beaming as before, but the interpreter bad quiltrd hi seat and was imivinR in the (lirection of the manager's room. Meenie courtesied and kow-tow-d in a sort of haze or swoon and managed to reel of the stage aomehow witli her burden of boquets. Mm rushed eagerly to Jack's room, a:;d as Elie reüdied the door she saw Lhat her worst feara were realized. A Celestial in pigtail and tunic wa3 standing at the door, engaged in low coi. v,: hal um wit!: ilie ihanager. Meenie entend wiih a swimmiBg brain and sank into a cliair. Tho i:;terpretor simt the door ..: ly, piured out a glass of sherry froin .Jack', dt-:canter on thetable, and held it g( to her Ups. 'Wiiisbt,' he said, beneath his breath, in tht pui est and tucst idionratic Hiberian. 'mnke yourself pcrfectly atey, niPdear, butduii'tspake loo loud.if you pl;ise, f or fear ye s!culd ruin U8 botlit.' There was soiiiething very fan iliar to Meenie in the voico, whlch made her start suddenly. She looked i p in aiuazement. 'Wliat!' sbe cried, regardlessof his vvaniing, 'it isn't jou, I 'Iudadc au' it is, me darliuV Pat answeréd in a low tone: 'but kaie it dark, if ye don't want us all to be found ont togither.' 'Not your long-lost brother?' said Jack in hessltation. 'You're not goüig t jifriorm Box and Cox in pi v .ielife before my very eyes, are you ?' ' 1 ie precise tbing, me boy,' Pat replied, unabashcd. 'Her brother. thai was in trouble for the last Fayniaa business, and run away to Caloutta. 'JLhere I got a passage to Chino, and took up tt lirst with the Jesui: missionaries. But, marrying a nate little Chinese girl, i luought I might aa well turn Mandarín, so I passed the ir examinatlons, and was appointed int i preter to the esubassy. An' now I'm in London I'm in deadly fea1 that Mike Flaherty, whö's one of tJ.e ctaief detectives at Scotland Yard, v. i)l flnd me om and recognize me, the Baine as thc-y recognized Toni Dale of Detroit, that poor cricketer Mlowat Leicester.' A féw minutes sufficed to clear upthe business. Pat's features leía themselves as readily as Meenie'a to tlie Chinese disguise; and he bad cleverly intimated to the Ambassador that are additional interpreter in the natiopal costume would prove more ornamental and eflective than a recognized European like Dr. Macartney. Aocoidingly lie had assumed the style and tille of. the Maudarin Hwen Thsang, aiul had sucnessfully passed himself off in London as a genuine Chinaman. tloreover, being gifted with Meenie's theatrical ability. he had learned to speak a certaiH broken Engiish without tlie slightest Irish accent; and it was ouly in mowents of euiotion, like the present, that he burst out inlo liis nativo dialect. He had recognized M enie on die stage, partly by her voiceai.d n ner, but still more by some fragmenta of irish nursery rhymes, whlch they had botb learned as ohUdren, and whicb ■ Meenie had buldly interpólate! imo tlie '.ext ot' tlie 'Fantaisies de ('an;un.' So he had devoted all liis eae gicd to l.t-ciiine up the hoax and deludincr the Ambassador. 'And bow did you manage to do it?" asked Jack. 'Sure I tould liim,' Pat ai sw 1 1 u' quietly, 'tbat, thoughye we;e all Ciiii were acting the play iu Engliflh ta suit your audk-nce. ' And the ould haythen was perftíCtly con lint to belava iu' 'Hut suppose be savs anyihii gabout it to anybody?' Divil a word can lie spake to anyjoiiy, except tlirough rne. Mal e yuurselves aisy abuut about it ; tlie Arnbasaadoi thinks U's all aa ngtit as íinience. Tlie thing's a magiiilicent success. ï e 11 jest coin nsoney, and nobody'll ever find e out. Surt Miere's nobodyiu London understands Chinese excpptus attheembassy, nul I'il ïuake it all straight íor ye thtue.' lleenie rushed into his arn s, and then into Jack's. 'Pat,' said nbti wiih emctiob, 'allow me to present ou to my future husband.' 'It's proud 1 am to make liis ao quaintanoe,' Pat answered proiuptly; 'and if he could lend me a tia-pound note for a day or two, it 'ud ba a uonvanience.' Three days later, Meenie beeame Mra. Jack Roberts ; and it was privately wbispered in well informed circlesthat the manager of the Chinese play had married the popular actresa Mee-Nee-Shang. At least it was known that a member of the einbassy had been present at a private meeting in alloman Catholic chapel iu Finsbuiy.where a priest was seen to enter, and Jack tnd Meeuie to enierce shortlv wan i. Of course, the hoax oozed out in time and all London was in a state of rage and despair. But Jack cooly snapped liis fiagers at the metropolis, tor he had made a small fortune over his season's entertainment, and liad accepted an offer to undertake the management oí a tbeatre at Cliicago, wfaere he is now doing remarkably well. Of course, ;oo, his hoax was a most wicked and uiiprincipled adventure, wbicb it has. given the present writer deep moral )ain to be compelled to chronicle. Hut lien ifpeople mh make such fools of hemselves, what is a well-meaninjf but weak-mindt'd theatrical purveyor o do?-


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